Text by CLOT Magazine
Trauma Bar un Kino in Berlin is becoming one of the most exciting venues in the city’s cultural scene thanks to a extremely thrilling programme.
Coming up on January 17, QT UR EA, an installation-oriented multi-dimensional work and exhibition by Mary-Audrey Ramirez and LUKAS8K, will be on view. Combining Ramirez’s sculpture and installation work with the real-time virtual environments of LUKAS8K, they incepted this fantasy world, trapped between an oniric state of our minds and a more materialistic existence. The work incorporates dance, performance, installation, sound and real-time virtual worlds and features collaborators such as choreographer Ali Heffetz and audiovisual artists bod [包家巷], Alza54 and Simon Goff.
The piece will be on show for an 8-week period and aims to transform the venue’s art space into an alien world – a science fiction narrative derived from the mechanics and language of open-world video games. In this game genre, the virtual version of what was known as role games popularised in the 90s, players band together to explore self-perpetuating virtual worlds, creating their own narratives as they battle fantastical creatures and search for loot – in the form of increasingly powerful weapons and items.
The title QT UR EA refers to a place (EA), its civilization (UR), and the perceptible reality (QT). The work’s physical and virtual spaces revolve around ideas of portals through spacetime, microorganisms, decay, and win and loss states designed by and for a human audience.
The opening performance on 17 January 2020 combines installation, costuming, dance, live motion capture and a live sound score. 8 performers will embody different stages of development of QT UR EA, inhabiting the space as creatures oscillating between primal and highly sophisticated expressions in movement. The sensory and immersive nature of the installation and performance creates a living, breathing world. As it transitions into a club night, it eventually encourages spectators to become participants in the work itself. Like the virtual arenas of open-world video games, the work will continue to expand and evolve over its two-month installation. The artists will continue to populate the space with assets that add to and detail the world and larger narrative.
The accompanying program includes musical and club programming, a live podcast hosted by NEW MODELS, talks on permaculture, and a feminist gaming night. The closing performance on 14 March 2020 will include a concert by Simon Goff & bod [包家巷], whose requiem will signify the end game after the defeat of a boss character, a classic video game move. This will be followed by a looting event in which visitors invade the loot space to take artefacts, created by the artists during the two months. A guidebook publication and soundtrack will further expand upon the narrative, as well as document events featured over the course of the installation.
In a world where the levels and layers of complexity in our everyday lives, our societies and in our virtual existence can’t stop increasing and where multidisciplinarity and interconnectedness are becoming la raison d’etre, this feels like the ultimate meta artwork for the 22nd century that’s to come.